Isaac’s Input: Referees


Isaac Gittleman, Columnist

     A ref calls a foul on you with two minutes left in your basketball game and the other team to takes the lead. How could the ref decide the game on a call like that? You let down your team and the lead you had worked to build is gone in a second.

     The paper lands in front of you, a grade culminating weeks of work and stress. A quick flip through and immediately, your heart sinks as you get a C. Why did you get a C?! Does this teacher know how to grade? Where did you go wrong?

     This type of situation happens in school and in sports when students get a grade they feel that they don’t deserve or a ref makes a game changing call that you claim even your five year-old brother wouldn’t have made. Nevertheless, these uncontrollable bad calls are inevitable, and there are several ways to deal with them.

     Whether or not it is demonstrated, anger often builds in these adverse situations. Some people outwardly express their emotions and feel the need to take out their adrenalin rush on someone or something. Others turn inward and look to themselves at why and how they messed up. Or they build up their anger less visibly and get anxious about the possible ramifications of this situation.

     One reaction and a way to outwardly take out anger and adrenalin is to argue, which can take place a few different ways. People often in this solution let their emotions get the better of them and end up losing their temper at the teacher or referee that messed and occasionally make a fool of themselves in their reaction to someone else’s mistake.

     There needs to be a certain amount of productivity in arguments over blown calls, so that If people calmly ask the ref why the call happened the way it did or ask the teacher to explain themselves in places that their grading seems unclear, things can be changed more easily. This is very difficult to do in the spur of the moment and can make athletes of all levels look foolish in their respective sport.

     An easier reaction is to remove yourself from the situation if it’s a school problem and regroup with the teacher once you’ve calmed your emotions and are able to have a constructive dialogue about the paper that you disagreed with the grading on. In sports, this isn’t really a viable solution, and ultimately we have to find a way to move on from these mistakes.

     In the end, even though it hurts badly sometimes, teachers and refs are all human and are bound to make mistakes. In the end you have to find a way to move on from this and if this is an assessment somewhere in the middle of the year or a bad call in the middle of the game, it shows character and strength to bounce back from this and successfully leave this bad call behind. If it’s not the last call of the game, you can’t let bad calls dictate the game, and use all of your power to keep going strong and hopefully erase the deficit that this adverse situation caused.